Have you ever wanted to get a poster of your favorite photo printed? I have. But I'm broke. Then I realized that you can make a very good looking poster sized image using a bunch of 4 x 6 photos.
Step 1: Materials
-16 4 x 6 photos (from cvs, walgreens, etc...)
- Foam poster board (I used 22 x 28)
-Elmer's spray adhesive glue
Step 2: Open Your Image in Photoshop
Increasing the contrast of your picture can sometimes help the final blown up image look nicer.
Step 3: Divide Your Picture Into 16 (or However Many You Want) Sections
Create a new layer and name it: grid
Use the pencil and ruler tool to divide your picture into equal sections. When using the pencil tool, you can hold down the shift key to make your lines straight. It is very important to make sure each section is exactly the same size; otherwise the image can be distorted.
Step 4: Make 16 Layers
Use the rectangular marquee tool to outline the box in the upper left hand corner of your picture. Right click inside the selected area and choose: layer via copy. This will make that section its own layer. Now do this same thing for the remaining 15 sections. It makes things easier to label each layer numerically 1-16, layer 1 being the upper left hand corner.
Step 5: Create a 4 X 6 Blank Document
After you create your blank 4 x 6 document, go back to your picture that is now divided into 16 equal sections. Click window, arrange, tile. Now you can see both files. With layer 1 selected, use the arrow tool in the upper left hand corner to drag layer 1 to the new blank document. Click edit, free transform (Ctrl + T) and scale the image so it fits perfectly in the document. Now save that image.
Do this process for the remaining 15 sections.
Step 6: Time to Print Them!
Now you should have each section saved as its own 4 x 6 picture. To make sure everything turned out okay, you can print each picture from your printer. Since I had never done this before, I cut each picture out and taped them all together to see how it looked.
Step 7: Let's See How It Looks
The picture turned out much better than expected, especially since I used my low quality printer. All of the pictures match up perfectly which is exactly what I was hoping for.
Step 8: Get Better Quality Pictures
Now that you know your picture has been aligned correctly, go and get them printed at your local CVS or Walgreen's. The pictures will look much better. 4 x 6 prints from walgreen's are very cheap, but you can sometimes find ways to get them for free. For example, I know that if you make an account at cvsphoto.com you get something like 50 free prints.
Step 9: Mount Them on Your Foam Poster Board (or Whatever You Feel Like Mounting Them On)
This is the only part I spend money on. I got a 28 x 22inch black foam poster board from Walgreen's for $4. I liked how the photos looked with a black background, but you can mount them however you like. You'll need to make some measurements to make sure your photo is centered on the foam board.
Here's how I did my measurements. I decided I wanted a .125inch gap between each picture, so I needed to figure out what the dimensions of the whole photo would be.
Since there are 3 gaps between the 4 photos, you just need to multiply .125 by 3, and add 24 (remember 4 x 6 pictues, so 6 inches times 4 pictures) to get the total length of 24.375 inches.
Do the same thing to get the height except after you multiply .125 by 3, add 16 to get 16.375.
The dimensions of the poster board are 28 x 22, so to find what the border dimensions will be, just subtract 24.375 from 28, and subtract 16.375 from 22. The dimensions of the border from the edge of the board will be 1.8125 x 2.8125 inches. Wooohooo done with math!
Before i glued the photos on the poster board, I drew the border lightly in pencil using a ruler and yard stick as a straight edge. This allowed me to easily align the photos on the outside. The pencil erased easily off the board.
My measurements kept the image pretty straight, but not perfect since I glued all of the photos by hand. If you have any other ideas on how to align the photos, feel free to try them and share.
Step 10: You're Done!
Congratulations! you're done. This project makes a great gift for parents, friends, or anyone else you care about. Your subject can be anything from a close-up of a family member or pet to a landscape of the ocean.
I am submitting this to the Holiday Gifts Contest, so if you liked this instructable your vote would be much appreciated!